We parked about a mile away from the park. Just the walk to the start was a warm up. All my daughters and my wife came with me. It was a beautiful day—for them. It was too hot for runners, about 12K of them. I learned that sometimes the race started on the boardwalk and finished in the park—the opposite direction of this year race. The starting path was narrow. The runners were winding all the way up to the other side of the park loop.

Assistants were distributing packets of salt. I took one and swallowed an Advil pill, as I was recommended by Scott, a seasoned marathoner. The crowd got slowly in motion after the horn sound. It took forever to cross the start line and then we could only jog. After the half loop we bumped in the tail of line of runners still waiting to cross the start line. Due to the large number of runners we were advised to run the 1st loop on the left side of the path and the 2nd loop on the outside to avoid bumping into the slower runners. It was a must, as the inside part became a continuous crowd of runners who started from rear corrals.

I found a runner I decided to draft behind. He was very fast and left me in the dust after mile 6, just when we were leaving the Prospect Park. I was pushing myself to a great extent as I wanted to break 1:30 finishing time. We entered Ocean Av. and continued on it for the rest of the race. It was a straight and infinite course. The temperature increased drastically, low 70’s°. The finish line was after running few hundred yards on the boardwalk. I literally finished seconds before my goal time, but it was painful. I had several blisters and was chafed. I didn’t enjoy the race at all.